This New Year, Metanorn has some exclusive content in-store for you. The Damnation coverage is just the first part of Comic Fiesta Exclusive.
Hello again folks, TKtakeru here, bringing you a special presentation coverage of Comic Fiesta that happened around a week ago. I’ll be co-covering this event with Toori-chan this year and would like to thank bosslady Kyokai for getting us Media Passes to get to these presentations easier and for tolerating our slightly late coverage of the event. I’ll be covering interviews with certain VIPs (redjuice and Danny Choo) later but for now, enjoy this write-up on Resident Evil Damnation.
Resident Evil. I’m sure this name sticks with anyone, gamer or anime fan. It was the bringer of the zombie apocalypse genre before it became such an over-saturated theme as it is today. We’ve seen the highs and lows of the game series, the mediocre offerings of the live action adaption and the CG animated Degeneration, which is quite an eye-candy. This year in Comic Fiesta, the team behind Degeneration sequel RE: Damnations came down and gave us an in-depth look in what went on behind the scenes and I’m here to give you all the juicy bits.
Spoiler alert: Although not much of the plot is revealed, those who have yet to watch the movie and are super-sensitive to spoilers, please refrain from reading.
Let’s begin with an introduction of Fly Studio, the studio responsible for CG and animation. It’s a Malaysian based studio, part of the Digital Frontier group. The CG Director Atsushi Doi loaded us with more details: The production for the movie took 12 months, while 3D conversion took 2 months with a staff of 450 people including voice actors and motion capture actors. Software used for production includes 3DS Max for CGI & VFX, Motion Builder for Animation and Maya for character facial expressions.
Description and 3DCG model of Leon
The movie stars Leon S. Kennedy and Ada Wong, they are the only familiar characters you’ll see in this movie while the rest are all original characters created for the plot. Leon and Ada were created using references from Resident Evil 6 game models and Leon’s military gear was sponsored by the movie director’s own military airsoft guns and vest.
Some character design showcase for the female president who is also one of the lead characters in the movie.
The studio’s design workflow starts from initial character design then collage and finally CG wireframe. The photo-realistic environments were done and rendered using highly detailed models without depending on special texture maps. The movie is set in a fictional European country but the production team used cities in Ukraine for reference, namely Kiev, Lviv, Odessa and Yalta.
For gun effects, Maya was used to create four types of muzzle flashes. Each individual effect for the pistol, assault rifle, HMG and sniper rifle. Bullet impact effect was also created for several different materials, namely glass, concrete and wooden crates. There were several scenes where traditional slow motion was put into use, one of them was when Ada kicked a table and flipped a cup of tea at the audience’s face. This scene was discussed in detail and how the team worked hard on getting the spill-effect correctly. They took a video of spilling tea for real as reference, doing it in a park no less, to the dismay of an elderly behind them.
Next up, ‘SPLOSIONS! They were created using Maya as well, the team took references from Terminator Salvation (gas station explosion) and even some real life ones. The difficulty in this is choreographing the camera to zoom out at the right time and how large should they make the explosion.
Final segment of the presentation was animation for the movie. The bulk of the acting and fight choreography was of course, done in traditional motion capture. Tanks were cardboard constructs pushed by actors, and the predatory movements of Lickers were also captured from a human actor. Further refining of the Licker’s movements was referenced from the Komodo Dragon. Facial animation was captured separately then final animation tweaks in Motion Builder such as exaggerating expressions. Interesting tidbit shared during this segment was, animation for emerging from smoke streaks were referenced from Z Gundam.
Last but not least, the CG Director himself bestowed upon us his top 10 must-dos when it comes to CG movies. Off the top of the list is boob physics, the other 9 was not told for undisclosed reasons (shortage of time most probably).
Of course, the character to get this treatment would be Ada Wong. It was mostly done in Maya, using IKs on each boob. They showed a demo reel of how the physics work and the scenes of the movie in which they come into play. Sadly, all that work was only for 3 short scenes, none of which I noticed while watching the movie until it was pointed out. So, people who have watched HoTD, don’t be alarmed because this is normal boob physics rather gravity-defying stunts.
Well, this wraps up the Resident Evil Damnation presentation. It was informative but I have gripes with the interpreter as I’m pretty sure several key lines got misinterpreted. Overall it was a great experience and definitely a good idea for adding it to Comic Fiesta. Look forward to exclusive interviews and overall convention coverage soon!
About the Guest Writer: TKTakeru
|I’m a Type-Moon and KEY works fan, known as an avid procrastinator and a self-proclaimed audiophile. Currently learning Japanese and has a love for horror mystery anime.||Links: Twitter & Google+|